PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Approximately 360 people and 28 pets are taking cover in shelters across Philadelphia, Mayor Michael Nutter said late Monday night.
The city is bracing for 40 to 50 mph sustained winds and flooding along the Delaware River.
Nutter said coastal flooding with heights of 10 feet is expected by 2 a.m. Tuesday – the record being 10.5 feet.
With one to two large bands of rain expected overnight, and another inch of rain in Philadelphia before midnight, Mayor Nutter urged residents to stay in place.
“Stay where you are,” said Nutter. “The combination of nightfall, rain and heavy sustained winds, are not conditions we want people to be out in.”
Officials say there are about 90 to 100 downed trees in the area. Some fell on cars, structures, power lines and others are blocking roadways.
The mayor urged residents to stay away from downed power lines.
“You run the serious risk of being electrocuted,” Nutter said. “Please report downed wires.”
PECO is working to restore service to several thousand residents in the city who have lost power due to superstorm Sandy. The mayor said L&I responded to 15 reports of structural conditions across the city.
READ: Power Outage Information
“We’ll be working through the night to protect Philadelphians. It is gratifying to see so many people who care so passionately about their fellow citizens,” Nutter said.
“Thank you Philadelphia, thank you Philadelphians for heeding the call to public safety. For taking the steps necessary to protect yourselves, for looking out for your fellow citizens. This is what we’ve come to expect, this is the Philadelphia that I know. This is why I am so proud of so many of you because you care so passionately about this city,” said Nutter.
On Tuesday, all public schools and all Archdiocesan schools will be closed. City government, with the exception of public safety, emergency first responders, and essential employees who have already been identified, will be closed.
There will be no mass transit operations on any of SEPTA’s lines in the morning while inspectors evaluate any damage that may have occurred on the system. Only after that assessment is done, Nutter said, will they try to bring the lines into operation.
Any non-emergency calls should be made to Philly’s 311 system.